Extremism and intelligence: NZ should not be shortsighted about the benefits of Five Eyes

As New Zealand grapples with the enormities of the Christchurch terrorist attack and their implications for the country’s diverse social fabric, security and law and order, some issues are paramount.

High on the list is the importance to NZ of the Five-Eyes intelligence network, no matter what some the government’s coalition partners might think.   Five-Eyes has been forwarding significantly important information in recent months. Without it, NZ would be bereft.

For example, the presence of a noxious NZ Islamist in Iraq has been monitored carefully over several months, extending to the ​presence there of other New Zealanders, not extremists,  working in various nursing and assistance roles ​in precarious situations.

None of this important information could be provided to the prime minister without Five-Eyes. Continue reading “Extremism and intelligence: NZ should not be shortsighted about the benefits of Five Eyes”

Cheering news for Jackie Blue – two women are among the prospects to head MFAT

Back in June,  a  post  in Point of Order quoted  a  range of  comments on a  reshuffle  of five  CEOs across the  public service by State Services  Commissioner  Peter  Hughes, who  said he wanted  to maintain  momentum in  key roles  and portfolios.

Among the comments, Equal Employment  Opportunities   Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue observed that the appointments were all male and criticised  the process  as  unfair  to  top  women in  the public  service.

So there will be keen interest, not least from that quarter, in the competition  for  the  top  job at the Ministry of  Foreign Affairs  &  Trade.  Its current CEO, Dr Brook Barrington, was one of the five involved in the June reshuffle and  is designated  to take over from Andrew  Kibblewhite  as  CEO  of the  Department of  the Prime Minister and Cabinet  from  February 1. Continue reading “Cheering news for Jackie Blue – two women are among the prospects to head MFAT”